Add a New Site to IIS Reverse Proxy with Application Request Routing

General Overview of steps.

  • Install the security certificate in IIS.
  • Add a new site.  The web root should be an arbitrary folder in wwwroot\reverse.
  • Add two site bindings.  One for HTTP and one for HTTPS.  Specify a hostname.  For HTTPS Require Server Name Indication.  Specify the SSL certificate you imported earlier.
  • Create or Ensure that the web server that is hosting the site is available through Server Farms (application request routing).
  • Click on the top-level Web server tree (Sombrero) and then open on URL  Rewrite.
  • There should be a rule for each server farm.  If there is not a rule for this server farm, add one.  Rule settings are below.
    • Requested URL: Matches Pattern
    • Using: Wildcards
    • Pattern: *
    • Under Conditions, add a new condition and specify the new application or site’s domain name as the pattern.  The condition input should be {HTTP_HOST}.
    • Action Type: Route to Server Farm
      • Scheme: https://
      • Server Farm: the farm were the application/site is hosted.

Bad Gateway 502 Error

Once the reverse proxy is setup on Sombrero and the traffic forwarded to the back-end server, there have been instances where navigating to the site produces a Bad Gateway 502 error.  This is usually caused by an mismatch of the principal name used in the certificate on the back-end server and the domain name used in reverse proxy rule on Sombrero.

Most recently, when setting up I ran into this issue.  The root cause was sourced to a mismatch of the domain name used in the server farm where the rule was pointed to.  I was using the internal domain name of the internal server, which in this case was tripping up IIS and causing the bad gateway error.  To fix this, I used split DNS (which I had already setup) for the domain.  Internally I point the same domain ( to the back-end server.  So, I just used this same name in the server farm configuration to point to my internal server.

Web Design Process Links

Below are a number of links that have helped form some of my thinking about the web design process over the past couple of years.

Responsive Web Design Articles

Content Design


Heritage Top Tasks 2016

The data below was collected during the Great Survey near the end of the 2015-2016 school year.  We had a sample size of 42 current students.

The methodology of focusing on Top Tasks was first introduced to me during an episode of The Web Ahead podcast.  Episode #106: Focusing on Customer Top Tasks with Gerry McGovern.

Also Gerry’s fantastic article on A List Apart called What Really Matters: Focusing on Top Tasks discussed the same topic with graphs and charts!  On to the Data. Top Tasks

Task Votes % of Total Votes
Course/Program information 36 17%
Moodle course material access 26 12%
Emergency information (closures and cancellations) 23 11%
Upcoming events (chapels, conferences, on-campus tour) 21 10%
Register/Apply for a course or program 20 10%
Contact information for the school (address, phones number, email) 16 8%
Faculty and Staff (pictures and contact info) 13 6%
Student handbook 13 6%
Read the Clipboard 11 5%
Bookstore hours and info 5 2%
Download/Listen to Audio from conferences and campus events 5 2%
Student Counsel 4 2%
Download/Listen to Audio from chapel 4 2%
Cafeteria hours 4 2%
Aletheia 3 1%
History about Heritage College and Seminary 2 1%
Job application for on campus job 2 1%
Social media (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube) 2 1%
Video 0 0%
Donate for the benefit of future students 0 0%